Viva Fall River Boosts the City’s Arts and Culture [TOWNSQUARE SUNDAY]
The City of Fall River is offering a boatload of attractions this summer, thanks in part to the energy generated by an organization called Viva Fall River.
Executive Director Patti Rego joined Townsquare Sunday via phone this week to discuss her agency and the work it is doing.
"Viva Fall River is a rally cry for the longevity and prosperity of Fall River. It's meant to get both people who live here and visitors and businesses excited about what's going on," Rego said.
Rego said her agency often works with small businesses, helping to upgrading storefronts or filling vacant properties. Viva Fall River also works with arts and cultural organizations and community groups and tourism.
"Viva Fall River is the organization that brings these groups together, to maximize opportunity in the city," she said.
Viva Fall River is part of a MassDevelopment program called TDI, or Transformative Development Initiative, which provides funding to gateway cities to develop programs that bring people together to address common goals. Viva Fall River grew out of the TDI program and works mainly in Downtown Fall River.
Rego said it has been really encouraging to see what's been accomplished over the past 12 months.
Viva Fall River recently announced a new program designed to convince travelers to stop in Fall River on their way to Cape Cod.
"Fall River is the gateway to the SouthCoast, so why wouldn't people want to stop here?" Rego said.
She said her organization is working with others to create billboards and web pages to remind motorists to "Take Five off 195" in Fall River.
The campaign will run through the months of July and August, when officials say 5.4 million cars make their way over the Braga Bridge and through the city of Fall River.
"We may not have the hotels to convince to you stay a day or two, but we can entertain you for a couple of hours, we can certainly provide you with an incredible ethnic meal, we can certainly show you some arts and culture, or some of our wonderful parks and playgrounds," she said. "Why not have a cool experience on the way to your destination?"
The complete interview with Rego can be heard here:
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